Every year, there's a whole new crop of parents at your school. Not all of them will want to become volunteers, but some will.

How those eager new parents are treated as school begins, as they attend their first meeting, and as they make their first suggestions will play a huge part in whether your group is able to add new energy to your team.

In my experience, almost every parent group says they really want more help. But do your actions match your words?

My column "A Tale of Two Volunteers" tries to capture the very real emotions around the new volunteer-old volunteer dynamic. You were once a new volunteer -- how did you feel then? And as an experienced volunteer, how do you feel when your work is questioned? Understanding where those feelings come from is a big step in making your group a more effective melting pot of old and new.

We have several additional articles about making a good first impression on new parents, including: